2012 could be a record-setting investment year for cleantech ventures, at least according to US-based research company The Cleantech Group. In 2011, the company reported that worldwide clean technology venture and corporate investments grew by 13% to a whopping $8.99 billion, with cleantech mergers and acquisitions totaling 391 deals and $41.2 billion.
While 2011 has been a difficult year for cleantech and venture capital, our 2011 numbers show surging interest in cleantech from global enterprises,” said Sheeraz Haji, CEO of Cleantech Group. “Despite some of the well-publicized headwinds, venture capitalists continue to invest in cleantech. Based on our historical data, we believe 2012 will be an all-time record year for global cleantech investments.”
Just a few weeks into 2012, there’s reason to believe Haji is exactly right: already there have been announcements of a new $270 million healthcare and sustainability fund from Massachusetts-based Flagship Ventures; a new £95m fund from Scottish Equity Partners, which combines nine of SSE’s cleantech ventures, with five more to follow; and a total $18.7 million of a proposed $22 million already raised by California-based AQT Solar.
“I don’t think the level of [cleantech] activity has gone down,” Flagship managing partner Noubar Afeyan told Boston.com. “I think that the level of noise has gone down. There was a time in cleantech when people were just spraying money around indiscriminately. What we’ve seen is that cleantech has turned out to be more like biotech. You need patient, flexible execution to generate reasonable companies.”
This kind of news is exciting for the world of cleantech, particularly for solar energy—and at Soluxe Solar, we’re always excited to hear about ways solar energy can spread and grow. Here’s to 2012!